Review: Nicola Peltz in 'Affluenza'

Nicola Peltz smokes a joint in "Affluenza." She plays a rich-kid whose pot-dealing cousin (Ben Rosenfeld) comes for a visit.

Kevin Asch's followup to Holy Rollers, Affluenza, portrays another New York subculture: Long Island trustafarians. Set in the 2000s, the movie's backdrop is the country's looming financial crisis.

Fisher (Ben Rosenfeld) arrives in Great Neck (where the director's from) to spend the summer with his cousin Kate (Tranformers: Age of Extinction's Nicola Peltz) and her snooty friends. Fisher doesn't really fit in, but since he sells marijuana, he's accepted into the crowd, which includes Kate's boyfriend Todd (Grant Gustin) and her BFF Jody (Valentina de Angleis). The wildcard in the group is Dylan (Gregg Sulkin), an extremely narcissistic rich kid who's obsessed with Kate.

They smoke a lot of pot, drink, have sex and generally live a high life, oblivious to the world around them. Later in the film, it all implodes when the stock market crashes. "The couch you're on, the lamp, it's gone," rants Kate's father (Steve Guttenberg). "All this accouterments, all the beauty, it's fucking gone."

While 2010's Holy Rollers depicted Orthodox Jewish boys who were recruited into drug smuggling, Affluenza aims to paint a more cynical portrait of runaway privilege, like the one of Dylan's grandfather hanging in the family mansion. It's a convenient target, and Asch nails it with a variety of knowing slings and arrows.

Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.